St. Cloud Times from Saint Cloud, Minnesota on July 13, 1998 · Page 17
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St. Cloud Times from Saint Cloud, Minnesota · Page 17

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Monday, July 13, 1998
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T&Acetem Times 5B Monday, July 13, 1998 ' Questions or comments about this section? Call Rene Kauuza, business editor, at 255-8761 For people with hearing impairments, TDD 255-8789 3 Qll)0 COfiUQPO Q Marian Rengel Technology today: 4 u'-iiur.-jiaMiM- 1 TIMES COLUMNIST Walking is a lot like space exploring Can't you almost hear Johann Strauss's "Blue Danube" waltz playing in the background? Can't you almost see the huge wheels of the Earth-orbiting space station whirling amid the stars? Can't you feel the excitement mounting? Since "2001: A Space Odyssey" implanted in my imagination in 1968 the dream of people traveling to and from space stations as easily as travel to and from city centers, I've waited for that dream to come true. If all goes well the first piece of the first International Space Station will be launched Nov. 20 from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakstan. In December, three crew members will leave Earth to become the first people to list their temporary address as "ISS, Somewhere Above the Earth." Two Russian cosmonauts and an American astronaut will travel in the space shuttle to the first section of the station and work at building this science home. NASA and its international partners in May pushed the launch schedule back by five months or we would now be reading about these launches and the launch in the next few weeks of the U.S. module from Kennedy Space Center. Now we have to wait until November and December for this dream to begin. Eventually seven scientists will live and work in a home the size of a 747 jet. They'll sore 220 miles above Earth and 51.6 degrees above the line that denotes the equator. From that height and that angle, astronauts and instruments will observe 85 percent of the globe and 95 percent of the human population. The International Space Station its creeping starts and stops, its debates about funding and the Russians' economic ability to fully participate, the doubts by many people about our efforts to reach beyond the atmosphere that gave us life all of these add up to an answer for me. Walking. Watch a child learn to walk. She experiments. She pulls herself up. Giggles. Falls down. She tries again. But why should she walk? Mom and Dad could carry her around her whole life. Yet she tries, until she succeeds. She grows. She senses some benefits to walking. Once she makes that reach beyond her limited horizon, she keens Headline. Eventually, as she grows, this chUd learns to walk spiritually and etmcauy as well as she learned to walk physically. T have also learned recently a definition of charity that seems to fit the space program. Do not give awav so much of vour wealth that you yourself become poor. Should we give away our space dream, our dream of walking beyond our limited range, we would lose much of who we are become poor. At the World Wide Web site dedicated to the station sta-tion.nasa.eov NASA is counting down the days to the first launch. I'm tuned m. I've got the page bookmarked in my Internet browser. I'm ready to watch the show and continue the dream. Marian Rengel is a Times staff writer and can be reached at 8769 orsctknesclcvdnet.ccim. our:.. pr.opcnTicc Ann at rise Heritage Market Shopping Centre Prime retail and office space for lease on 2nd Street one of the highest traffic count locations in the St. Cloud area. 1000 sq. ft. to 40,000 sq. ft. available; Don't miss this opportunity - space filling fast. FIIASE TWO: NOW PRE LEASING BETAILWAREII01SE FLEX SPACE! St. Cloud native finds software success Founder sees Jasc as $100 million company in future By AnnS. Kim TIMES STAFF WRITER Robert Voit used to play around with pictures on his computer when he wasn't flying planes for Northwest Airlines. His hobby was the genesis of Jasc Software, a $10 million Min-netonka company that leads the market for graphic software geared toward home and home office users. Voit, a St Cloud native, graduated from St Cloud State University in 1983 with a degree in computer science and a minor in aviation. He pursued flying as a career and was hired as a pilot for Northwest Airlines in 1985 while programming on his own time for enjoyment "My hobby was to go to my computer and start playing around," Voit said. He compared computer programming to a more widespread pastime. "It's kind of like a crossword puzzle. You know there's an answer, you just have to figure out what it is," he said. But unlike crosswords, there's more than one way to arrive at a solution. The seed for Paint Shop Pro, Jasc's major product, was planted in the spring of 1990 with the release of Microsoft Corp.'s Windows operating system. Voit was playing with pictures for fun, rotating them, changing their sizes and otherwise manipulating them. But he discovered there weren't any applications that provided all the functions he wanted. - So, he wrote his own. Voit put the program on electronic bulletin boards. In return he received lots of suggestions and some people who were happy enough with it to send him a $25 payment Voit founded Jasc in 1991. The company's name, which is an acronym for "jets and software company," reflects the the way Voit split his life between programming and flying for Northwest By 1995, Jasc had six employees and the business increased Gateway 2000 trade-in plan targets users short on cash Customers trade computer for new model in 2 years GANNETT NEWS SERVICE Anyone interested in buying a computer probably has come across the latest ads from Gateway 2000 touting a low monthly payment for a computer that can be traded up for a flashy new model in two years. What's the catch? The program, called Your.)Ware, lets you get a computer with Internet access and the latest software starting at $49.95 a month for 48 months for a Pentium II 266 Mhz model. The more powerful the model, the higher the payments. Though it sounds like a lease, Gateway is quick to point out it is not one. Unlike a lease, customers own the unit by borrow 1 1 - -, ..... -' 11 1 ' .. . 1 1 . .' 1 II"-"" - in- .ii ..H.ii i ...i.,! i i I, in n ii mi. i ... ii I. it 'r" I ill! i - J-'- i . " ' J : : 1 TIMES PHOTO BY ANDRA VAN KEMPEN St Cloud native and St Cloud State University graduate Paint Shop Pro. The software, similar to Adobe Photo-Robert VoK, owner of Jasc Software based in Minneton- shop, is personal computer-based, ka, developed his own image editing software called its demands on Voit "I could no longer work two full-time jobs," Voit said. "You certainly didn't have time to think of programming when you were frying.'' With Jasc's future appearing so promising, Voit decided to concentrate his attention on the company. "We had just broken $1 million in the previous month. The growth rate of the company was phenomenal," Voit said. "Everything indicated the company would be prosperous, especially if I spent more time with it" The modest beginnings of Paint Shop Pro created a base for a loyal following. New users came to the program as word-of-mouth spread. "It's estimated that over 10 ing the money from Gateway's lender at an annual rate of 14.9 percent At the end of 24 months, customers can trade up to a new model with a few caveats. First, the original loan must be paid off. You can bundle the payoff amount with the amount of your new Gateway. The company offers average wholesale value on your old model, so that money can be used to offset the cost If you'd rather not trade up, you simply continue paying on your loan. You can buy the computer outright with cash or credit card provided you purchase at least six months' of Internet access (at $14.95 a month) or a Gateway software bundle (priced at $69 to $99). So, is this a good deal? Well, after four years, you will have spent $2,397.60 for a computer that costs $1,323 ($1,254 T 6 Everything indicated the company would be prosperous, especially if I . spent more time with it d Robert Voit STARTED JASC SOFTWARE million people have downloaded and used the program," Voit said. The shareware approach, which allows users to download the product, try it out and pay if they like it, is still an important part of Jasc's strategy even though the product is now available through catalogs and retail outlets. Jasc had handled all its orders itself, but started marketing through catalogs in January 1996 and in retail stores in June plus $69 for software, the least expensive option). Both prices exclude tax and shipping. So if you have the cash, an upfront payment is obviously the best way to go and you're still guaranteed a trade-in value. If you're short on cash, however, the deal is a good one. The 14.9 percent rate is competitive average credit card rate is about 18 percent Consider that there are teaser deals out there as low as 4.9 percent that you could go for, though they usually are limited to six months to a year. Analysts see the Gateway deal as a sign of the times, and a good business move. "The deal is quite attractive in the sense that it also combines Internet access in one monthly fee," said Charles Smulders, a senior industry analyst at San Jose-based Dataquest. "It is an innovative approach." cnr:rcn or a en cat 4 2nd Street Quad Shopping Center Approximately 30,000 sq. ft. of retail buildlease next to PetsMart, Dunhams Discount Spits and Petters Warehouse Direct. Great location the intersection of 2nd Avenue South and 2nd Street South. 1997. "We still see a lot of people who are downloading it and trying it out," Voit said. These days, Voit doesn't program. Instead, about a dozen of Jasc's 60 employees in Minneton-ka busy themselves with programming. Volt's duties are now those of a president and chief operating officer who oversees day to day operations. He isn't overwhelmed by his Relive the summer Remember the summer of '67 a.k.a. the Summer of Love? Love-ins. Be-ins. Flower power. Relive those psychedelic days (virtually, at least) through this special on-line presentation from the University of Virginia Text and photo backgrounders on everything from Timothy Leary to the "Sexual Paradise of LSD." wwwJib.virginia.eduexhibfts sixtiesindex, html Less Pain With Loans LendingTree aims to use the power of the Web to make shopping for a loan less painful. The on-line loan center promises to connect would-be borrowers to a network of lenders competing for their business. The site's privacy policy says personal info wil be tightly controlled. www.lendingtree.com Car-buyer Options Microsoft's redesigned CarPoint boasts that it's the first to present new-car buyers with lists of options unique to every make and model. The idea is that you can specify the exact car you want, saving time and confusion. T T success, saying that he saw signs of it along the way. "Most of the time you're going to see it happening," Voit said. His sister, Kim Voit, isn't surprised either. ? "He's one of those Midas-guys," she said. "Whatever he touches turns to gold." As though they foreshadowed his adult success, she cited examples of Voit's earlier promise: becoming an Eagle Scout in ninth grade, his wrestling stint at Technical High School, his trick waterskiing. "He was one of those kids who was good at everything he did," she said. Fortunately for Kim Voit, a recent Jasc hire, and her coworkers, Jasc's success hasn't gone to her brothers head. CVBERBUZZ carpointmsn.com How Rich Are You? Heard about the new Forbes list of the world's to working billionaires? Here's your chance to see how you stack up against the supposedly 10 smartest entrepreneurs of the group. With a clickable work) map to find the countries with the greatest share of these billionaires. www.forbes.comtooltool-boxbillnew1 998.asp Cookin' Interactive The concept behind My Cookbook: Make recipes interactive. You can create an on-line cookbook and access it anywhere with a Web-connected computer. Or share recipes. www.mycookbook.com Biros Nest On Stte Garden.com shows us that gardening isn't just abut plants. It's also about "the birds of summer." Robins, wrens, orioles, thrashers, mourning doves and more, including an occasional mockingbird. They're singing their hearts our for us. ar-raRTUfiiTY Increased store traffic. Improved sales. Environments that attract shoppers. Merchandising that attracts the right customers. Retailers today demand i lot. And at Miller Properties, we have one property that's sure to meet those demands. If land is what you're looking for, we have sites available in bar industrial parks in the St. Cloud area. Hwhivtriei emt Industrial Prfc Summt twtfltfml fork -Mitl Inrhntml Park -Milk Park ihtili I) ' T ' at For thes properties and more call Jeron Winter or Galen Kabe. 320-251 -41 09 1-800-772-1758 "I don't think you can find a better boss anywhere else in the world," she said. "He cares so much about the employees." She sees examples of his attitude in the free pop the company provides, the pizza they have every couple weeks, his open-door policy and a flexible, trusting approach. Jasc is devoid of the "nit-picking, back-stabbing stuff" she's experienced at other jobs. "Once they start here, no body ever leaves," she said. That's a good thing for Voit, as he has plenty of goals to keep ' employees occupied. Among ; them is making Jasc a $100 mil-' lion company in the next five years. He's confident about the future and noted that he expects Jasc to make Inc. magazine's list of 500 fastest U.S. growing companies. "1 To do this, Jasc has to capture more of the market. Jasc leads its market, but doesn't hold a majority of it. Voit estimates Jasc currently holds about 35 percent of the "prosumer," or J "professional consumer," market Jasc targets PC users. There are basic users who, with digital cameras, cheap scanners and -the rise of the World Wide Web, -want to manipulate photos, make their own Christinas cards and otherwise use graphics applications for their own use. There are also small home office users who use graphics programs to design their own brochures and presentation. Graphics professionals, who generally use Macintoshes and for whom Adobe's Photoshop, at about seven times the price of Paint Shop Pro, is the industry standard, are not Jasc's main market. But they too, could be ' users of Paint Shop Pro. Although Jasc leads its mar-" ket, it is dwarfed by its competitors in terms of company size - "Every one of them is bigger ' than us. It just makes it more ! challenging," Voit said. "It actually keeps it fun in some ways. We're the underdog." 1 Voit's calm about Jasc's success so far is matched by his optimism for the future. "It's fun to do battle with them in corporate America and still come out on top when you're the littlest guy," he said. of love www.garden.com 'Off The Beaten Path' HiddenAmerica casts a spotlight on what it dubs "events and places off the beaten path," whether it's the Chisholm Trail Round-up Festival or Wisconsin's sesquicentenniaJ. The site claims a database of 10,000 events. www.hiddenamerica.com Humor, Dilbert-style Here's an online reminder that "Gilbert Quotes" don't only happen in the comics. helpdeskfunnies.cyberjuice.c omdilberthtm In Memory Of Pets... When's the last time you saw a cocker spaniel with wings? This In Memory of Pets site is a nice thought but still, way strange. Poems, tributes and support pages. www.in-memory-of-pets.com Cybetbuzz lists Web sites consid- j ered newsworthy. Being feted s not an endorsement of thesite,its products or 1 US SWVMjS. M Cwu w7 Mil f I K IMUH'I H I (I l

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